A woman receives an overdose of a new type of drugs that allows her greater access to her own brainpower. As she grows to 100% percent of brain power use, she gains control over matter and energy.
I feel compelled to write about this movie because it is the worst one I have seen in many years and it makes me angry just to think about it. I have seen people defend this movie by saying that it is only a dumb action movie and that you should view it as such. But I don’t agree. Dumb action movies are fun when it is clear that they are dumb action movies but Lucy very much tries to take its premise seriously and then it turns ridiculous. Limitless (2011) is an example of a dumb action movie with a similar theme that works. Lucy is not.
The movie starts with Morgan Freeman as a professor who presents in front of a university classroom, much like Tom Hanks in The Da Vinci Code. His grave voice and the classical room asks the viewer to take everything that Freeman says with the utmost respect. The pseudoscience that he then presents and has to support this movie is absolute drivel that is coated in a language of pomposity and pretension. Were he to present at a TED conference, no-one would have clapped but had frowned their faces. Instead, the camera shows students nodding in fascination. Luc Besson, please do not ask me to take this seriously. If it is supposed to be a fun action movie about a dumb idea, why are you forcing it down my throat this way? I am only going to cough it up again.
I am reminded of M. Night Shyamalan’s The Happening, which also shows pseudoscience about “nature fighting back” to explain his plot of plants attacking humans. The science angle didn’t work for such a stupid idea back then, and it doesn’t work in Lucy either. I am especially let down by Morgan Freeman who presented the science documentary show Through the Wormhole so I thought that he had a warm heart for science but I cannot believe that any longer now he lent his voice for nonsense (and money).
But wait!!! This movie can still be saved!
Yes, if we play the what-if game. What if… the premise was real? What would happen if someone goes to 100% brain use? Wouldn’t that be exciting stuff? So, let’s see what Luc Besson does with it:
- Lucy gains magic powers over time and matter.
- Lucy goes on an indiscriminating murderous rampage.
I throw my hands up in the air. Not only do you force me to take your idea seriously, Besson, but also your execution of doesn’t make any sense. First you try to convince me that this is hard science fiction and then the movie becomes fantasy, because “we don’t know what happens after 10%” so everything becomes possible. Once in a while the movie tells us that she has gone from 20 to 30% brain power, or from 60 to 70%. With every step, she gains magic powers. She controls the lights in a professor’s study room halfway around the globe. She disintegrates into energy or something.
Your movie about expanding mind power is only about mindless violence. She starts shooting people left and right with a blank expression on her face. Cab driver doesn’t speak English, shoot him. Sometimes the movie cuts to a shot of a predator, suggesting that Lucy with her brain powers has now become a predator over the human race. So that is how people behave when they get smarter huh?
I get it. Luc Besson just wants to see sexy women action heroes and Lucy is his new excuse. Lucy is the new Nikita, the new Leeloo from The Fifth Element.
This movie may not be the worst one I have ever seen, but it may very well be the most insulting one.